The Association Between Psychopathic Personality Traits and Criminal Justice Outcomes

Results From a Nationally Representative Sample of Males and Females

Kevin M. Beaver, Brian B. Boutwell, J. C. Barnes, Michael George Vaughn, Matt DeLisi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

There has been a great deal of research revealing that psychopathy is related to criminal involvement and other measures of antisocial behavior. However, the generalizability of these findings is limited because of some potential problems with measurement and because of the overreliance on forensic samples and the relative lack of psychopathy measures in national samples. The current study addresses these gaps in the existing psychopathy literature by examining the association between a Five-Factor Model–based measure of psychopathic personality traits and criminal justice outcomes in a nationally representative sample of males and females. Analysis of data drawn from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health (Add Health) revealed that psychopathic personality traits predicted the probability of being arrested, of being incarcerated, and of being sentenced to probation for both males and females. Additional analyses revealed that the psychopathic personality traits scale was also associated with a self-reported delinquency scale. We concluded by discussing the importance of the concept of psychopathy and psychopathic personality traits to criminological theory and research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)708-730
Number of pages23
JournalCrime and Delinquency
Volume63
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jan 1

Fingerprint

Antisocial Personality Disorder
Criminal Law
personality traits
justice
probation
delinquency
Research
Longitudinal Studies
longitudinal study
adolescent
lack
Health
health

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Law

Cite this

@article{291df530f9824dd38d42cfa075dd3801,
title = "The Association Between Psychopathic Personality Traits and Criminal Justice Outcomes: Results From a Nationally Representative Sample of Males and Females",
abstract = "There has been a great deal of research revealing that psychopathy is related to criminal involvement and other measures of antisocial behavior. However, the generalizability of these findings is limited because of some potential problems with measurement and because of the overreliance on forensic samples and the relative lack of psychopathy measures in national samples. The current study addresses these gaps in the existing psychopathy literature by examining the association between a Five-Factor Model–based measure of psychopathic personality traits and criminal justice outcomes in a nationally representative sample of males and females. Analysis of data drawn from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health (Add Health) revealed that psychopathic personality traits predicted the probability of being arrested, of being incarcerated, and of being sentenced to probation for both males and females. Additional analyses revealed that the psychopathic personality traits scale was also associated with a self-reported delinquency scale. We concluded by discussing the importance of the concept of psychopathy and psychopathic personality traits to criminological theory and research.",
author = "Beaver, {Kevin M.} and Boutwell, {Brian B.} and Barnes, {J. C.} and Vaughn, {Michael George} and Matt DeLisi",
year = "2017",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1177/0011128715573617",
language = "English",
volume = "63",
pages = "708--730",
journal = "Crime and Delinquency",
issn = "0011-1287",
publisher = "SAGE Publications Inc.",
number = "6",

}

The Association Between Psychopathic Personality Traits and Criminal Justice Outcomes : Results From a Nationally Representative Sample of Males and Females. / Beaver, Kevin M.; Boutwell, Brian B.; Barnes, J. C.; Vaughn, Michael George; DeLisi, Matt.

In: Crime and Delinquency, Vol. 63, No. 6, 01.01.2017, p. 708-730.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - The Association Between Psychopathic Personality Traits and Criminal Justice Outcomes

T2 - Results From a Nationally Representative Sample of Males and Females

AU - Beaver, Kevin M.

AU - Boutwell, Brian B.

AU - Barnes, J. C.

AU - Vaughn, Michael George

AU - DeLisi, Matt

PY - 2017/1/1

Y1 - 2017/1/1

N2 - There has been a great deal of research revealing that psychopathy is related to criminal involvement and other measures of antisocial behavior. However, the generalizability of these findings is limited because of some potential problems with measurement and because of the overreliance on forensic samples and the relative lack of psychopathy measures in national samples. The current study addresses these gaps in the existing psychopathy literature by examining the association between a Five-Factor Model–based measure of psychopathic personality traits and criminal justice outcomes in a nationally representative sample of males and females. Analysis of data drawn from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health (Add Health) revealed that psychopathic personality traits predicted the probability of being arrested, of being incarcerated, and of being sentenced to probation for both males and females. Additional analyses revealed that the psychopathic personality traits scale was also associated with a self-reported delinquency scale. We concluded by discussing the importance of the concept of psychopathy and psychopathic personality traits to criminological theory and research.

AB - There has been a great deal of research revealing that psychopathy is related to criminal involvement and other measures of antisocial behavior. However, the generalizability of these findings is limited because of some potential problems with measurement and because of the overreliance on forensic samples and the relative lack of psychopathy measures in national samples. The current study addresses these gaps in the existing psychopathy literature by examining the association between a Five-Factor Model–based measure of psychopathic personality traits and criminal justice outcomes in a nationally representative sample of males and females. Analysis of data drawn from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health (Add Health) revealed that psychopathic personality traits predicted the probability of being arrested, of being incarcerated, and of being sentenced to probation for both males and females. Additional analyses revealed that the psychopathic personality traits scale was also associated with a self-reported delinquency scale. We concluded by discussing the importance of the concept of psychopathy and psychopathic personality traits to criminological theory and research.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85019046304&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85019046304&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1177/0011128715573617

DO - 10.1177/0011128715573617

M3 - Article

VL - 63

SP - 708

EP - 730

JO - Crime and Delinquency

JF - Crime and Delinquency

SN - 0011-1287

IS - 6

ER -